Julie's Jabber - This week with London LDWA

Julie's Jabber - This week with London LDWA
Julie's Jabber - This week with London LDWA

You will see from the panel below that following the advice of organiser Chris Blackwell London Group has made the tough decision not to stage the Founders Challenge this year. The prospect alone of entrants having to be equipped with masks and gloves, and not being allowed into checkpoints, would mean significant changes to the normal routine, and agreement was unanimous that these and other difficulties were overwhelming.  Chris has put an enormous amount of effort into trying to make it possible - it's a real shame his hard work will be unrewarded, this year at least. 

On a related topic, the proposed 25th anniversary Founders Tree Walk on 12th September and a celebratory pub gathering afterwards has also been put on hold as it looks highly unlikely that restrictions will be lifted in time. The alternative suggested by Colin Saunders is a series of afternoon/evening walks, maximum six per walk, from stations around London, which would aim to finish at about the same time in a park, at a social distance from each other, and distantly toast each other with, say, Prosecco.  

The number of walks would obviously depend on how many people offer to lead.  Colin is willing to lead one from Oakwood, distance and start time to be arranged. Each leader, he adds, would have to be prepared to carry a bottle of fizz and six plastic glasses!   

We will, of course, arrange a proper celebration when conditions allow.


2020 Founders Challenge cancelled


A message to the walkers and helpers of the Founders Challenge from Chris Blackwell, organiser: 


With regret and sadness, this year's event has now been cancelled, due to the ever-changing and unpredictable conditions we find ourselves in. With two months to go, and needing to plan with firmness and predictability, we were faced with uncertainties in most directions, along with the fact that there is no sign currently that events are going to be re-introduced any time soon. This is my first year organizing this event. Planning how to deal with issues from a desk is totally different from going out and walking the route, and actually seeing the issues first hand in person. That brought home the real facts and the mountains that still needed to be climbed to make it work, with those uncertainties. That’s the background of the situation in which I needed to make my decision. The hope is that the event will be back in 2021 in more stable conditions than this year. The situation will be review in February, after what winter brings us.  

Thank you to everyone who has helped me, and offered their services or support, it was appreciated in a difficult year THANK YOU.  

 Chris Blackwell




Last Monday - too late to go in Jabber - Rod Smith emailed to say he had just (less than halfway through the month) completed the Chairman's Challenge for July 2020, having achieved 101.13 miles (161.81kms) in a total time of 19 hours 59 mins 14 secs pounding Deal's seafront during the current lockdown. 'All walked; nowt run. At age 74 and a half, very much a "'self-challenge'".

Congratulations, Rod. You're a walking machine!




A nice comment from Francis Thomason on one oh the pictures shown in the July 13th Jabber:

'The Thames at low tide photo stirs a memory of the LCC (I think) post war shipping barge loads of sand to a section of the Thames bank; it took a few days for the tides to scour away and accommodated many family excursions.  The best of It was, many of the children were convinced for years that they’d had a day at the seaside.'




Last week's Jabber contained an appeal from LDWA Merchandising Officer Tim Glenn for certain back numbers of Strider to replace those damaged in a freak storm.  Dutifully I hunted through my collection without finding any of the editions he needed - sorry, Tim. What I did unearth was Strider Number 123 - August 2012. I had just taken over as editor from Ken Falconer and this was the first I'd been responsible for. Maybe looking at the walks programmes in Group News was a mistake because of course I immediately and sadly started to compare it with what was in the August 2020 London Group walks programme (i.e. sweet F.A.). However, it was good to spot a few familiar names in there: Jerome Ripp leading three walks, Lonica Vanclay and Douglas Robinson two each, a midweek evening London Parks with Rob Myers, Susanne Waldschmidt putting on 'Not The Jubilee Walk Part Two', Godfrey O'Callaghan offering 'Isle of Grain - Almost Circular', a 'Haslemere to Guildford Linear' from our fondly-remembered Don Bolton and - oh dear - the Founders Marshals', with Gordon Parker leading the charge. Most intriguing was  a 'Guildford Surprise' by Dave Williams... was 'not finishing at a Wetherspoons' the surprise?  


Life Imitating Art 


dorset hundred london group

I snapped the above on the Saturday of the Dorset 100  - London Group was marshalling at the start and finish, and in between all that Susanne led the customary walk. I remember this tea break for the delicious chocolate cake, served from a caravan. Not quite as elegant as the dinner party pictured by Paul Chabas (below), of course, but to be there all together after a good day's walking was lovely.



paul chabas painting french




London LDWA - http://www.ldwa.org.uk/London